Skin moles are common colored spots on the skin. Some people have moles from birth. Others develop moles as they age. In every case, a mole is formed by clusters of pigment-producing cells called melanocytes. These create a dark skin pigment called melanin, which gives moles their characteristic brown or tan colored appearance.
Mole removal is only medically mandated when atypical moles present early signs of skin cancer. However, mole removal is also a common cosmetic procedure. Usually, mole treatment is sought out by people who have moles in facial locations and is completely safe and painless.
Moles can be present at birth. However, moles can also develop throughout early adulthood. Sun exposure is a common cause of moles. At the same time, though, certain genetic traits can make some people more susceptible to moles than others.
Having lighter skin, red hair, and green or hazel eyes increases the likelihood of being born with and developing moles.
Typically, melanin-producing melanocyte cells are distributed evenly throughout the dermis. This is why most people have a uniform skin tone and tan evenly.
When a mole is formed, melanocyte cells cluster in a specific area. This causes a tan, brown, or black oval shape. Moles can be flat or raised, and form anywhere on the body. Skin moles can also darken with age, pregnancy, and sun exposure. However, rapid changes in appearance should always be medically investigated.